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Protecting Your Future / While you Build ours
Protecting Your Future / While you Build ours
Protecting Your Future / While you Build ours
Protecting Your Future / While you Build ourse
Protecting Your Future / While you Build ours
Protecting Your Future / While you Build ours

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Plan Membership and Years of Service

When Do I Become A Participant In The Plan?

You become a participant in the Plan as of the first day you work in Covered Employment in the first year you earn a Year of Service.

You will continue to be a participant in the Plan unless you suffer a Permanent Break in Service before you become vested.

How Do I Earn a Year of Service?

Generally, you earn a Year of Service by working in "Covered Employment".

"Covered Employment" is employment for which an Employer has agreed to contribute to the Plan under a collective bargaining agreement with the Union or, in the case of Union officers and Employees of the Steamfitters’ Industry Educational Fund, employment for which contributions are made in accordance with an agreement to do so.

You earn a Year of Service for any calendar year in which you meet the following requirements:

(a) All Years up to and including 1952:

(i) you were a member in good standing of the Union and your dues were fully paid and no evidence to the contrary is submitted to the Trustees for any year; or

(ii) you provided satisfactory evidence to the Trustees that you completed 250 hours of service in Covered Employment during the year; or

(iii) you were a salaried official of the Union and you had earnings of $1,000 or more in Covered Employment during the year.

(b) Years 1953 through 1958 inclusive:

(i) you were eligible for coverage under the Steamfitters’ Industry Welfare Fund; or

(ii) you provided satisfactory evidence to the Trustees that you completed 250 hours of service in Covered Employment during the year; or

(iii) you were a salaried official of the Union, and you had earnings of $1,000 or more in Covered Employment.

(c) Years 1959 through 1975 inclusive:

You worked in Covered Employment, earning at least 250 times the journeyman steamfitters’ hourly wage rate in effect on January 1 of the year under the collective bargaining agreement, rounded to the next lower $100.

(d) Years 1976 through 1995:

You worked in Covered Employment, earning at least 250 times the journeyman steamfitters’ hourly wage rate in effect on January 1 of the year under the collective bargaining agreement.

(e) Years 1996 and later:

You worked 250 hours in covered employment regardless of your union status.

(f) In determining whether you have completed a Year of Service in 1977 or any later year, the Plan may count contributions that are actually paid to the Plan on your account by another U.A. pension fund under a reciprocal agreement with this Plan. Such contributions actually received must equal or exceed the dollar amount of contributions which would have been received if your employment under the reciprocal agreement had been Covered Employment as a journeyman steamfitter under the Plan. You can earn a Year of Service partly with Covered Employment under the Plan and partly with service under a reciprocal agreement. For more details, contact the Fund Office.

(g) The rules in the following paragraph apply only to employment as an apprentice:

(i) Years 1983 and 1984 and for 1985 if you were indentured as an apprentice before 1984:

If you are not credited with a Year of Service under section (d) above, you will be credited with a Year of Service for 1983 if you earned at least 250 times the journeyman steamfitters’ hourly wage rate in effect on January 1 of such year under the collective bargaining agreement, multiplied by:

42.5% in the case of a first year apprentice,
52.5% in the case of a second year apprentice,
62.5% in the case of a third year apprentice and
80% in the case of a fourth year apprentice.

(ii) Years 1985 through and including 1997:

If you are an apprentice indentured on or after January 1, 1984, and are not credited with a Year of Service under section (d) above, you will be credited with a Year of Service for each calendar year during which you earned at least 250 times the journeyman steamfitters’ hourly wage rate in effect on January 1 of such year under the collective bargaining agreement multiplied by a fraction, the numerator of which is the hourly wage rate applicable to you on January 1 of the Plan year and the denominator of which is the journeyman steamfitter’s hourly wage rate on January 1 of such Plan year under the collective bargaining agreement.

(iii) Years 1998 and later:

For Plan Years 1998 and later, a participant, including an apprentice, shall be credited with a year of service if he worked 250 hours in covered employment. In addition, retroactively to January 1, 1996, an Employee working in the temporary heat and air conditioning classification, and a reciprocal journeyman working in the jurisdiction of Local Union 638, will be credited with a year of service if he worked at least 250 hours.

(h) Certain periods of active U.S. military service may also count toward your Years of Credited Service if you are engaged in Covered Employment immediately before such military service and return to Covered Employment within a year after discharge. Contact the Fund Office for more information.

(i) Limited credit for periods of Workers’ Compensation

Effective January 1, 1996, if a participant is injured in covered employment he will be credited with 1/6 of the hours necessary to earn a year of service for each month that he receives Workers’ Compensation benefits upon presentation of adequate documentation to the Trustees. A participant may not earn more than one year of service during his lifetime under this provision. Credit for Workers’ Compensation is not available to any employee who has retired under the Plan.

When Do I Become Vested?

(i) 1997 and prior. You become vested in your Plan benefit after completing 10 Years of Service which have not been canceled due to a Break in Service. Covered Employees of the Union and the Steamfitters’ Industry Educational Fund become vested after 5 Years of Service which have not been canceled due to a Break in Service.

(ii) Effective January 1, 1998, you become vested in the Plan if you are credited with at least 5 years of service which have not been previously canceled and you worked at least 1 hour in Covered Employment after January 1, 1998.

Once you become vested, you cannot lose credit for your Years of Service and you are entitled to receive a benefit from the Plan when you retire.

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